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Michigan State University's Institute for Public Policy and Social Research, in conjunction with the Center for Local, State, and Urban Policy at the University of Michigan, sponsoring the Michigan Policy Insiders Panel (MPIP), a regular online survey of state political insiders. Our goal is to understand how policymakers learn about state problems, develop political influence, and interact to produce policy solutions. The confidential online panel regularly surveys legislators and legislative staff, high-level administrative officials, and interest group leaders and lobbyists. 

Importantly, MPIP can now serve as a basis of comparison for public views ascertained via the State of the State Survey and the Michigan Public Policy Survey, providing data to understand differences in opinions between state-level executives, local officials and the general public.

Our intent, is always to assess the backgrounds, interconnections, policy views, expectations, and perceptions of Michigan policymakers. A portion of each survey round is dedicated to assessing the views of these political and policymaking insiders on public policy issues where we have corresponding views from Michigan citizens. A panel survey allows background questions to be asked in the entrance survey, with additional surveys retaining these links to prior information. We assess changes in attitudes as the Michigan Legislature pursues policies and as election campaigns progress. Those understandings  enable analyses of changes in perceptions and opinions in response to real-world political events. A panel allows us to ask respondents for predictions of future events that can be used to make crowdsourced forecasts of political outcomes and to assess the forecasting ability of panel members.

We are delighted to share results, not only for faculty members statewide and nationally, but with policymakers, researchers at all levels and members of the general public. We hope you will share your insights and your publications with us.

We are sharing our observations, insights and publications too. We now have a substantial body of work to share. We'll be posting results, news releases, blogs, research papers and other updates on Facebook, Twitter and Linkedin as they are available, and hope you'll regularly seek them out and share your comments.

News from the first round of MPIP can be found here http://ippsr.msu.edu/news/michigan-policy-insiders-neither-liberal-nor-conservative

See our first MPIP results: https://ippsr.msu.edu/sites/default/files/mpip/MPIPRound1_BriefReport.pdf. See accompanying appendix from our first panel questions: https://ippsr.msu.edu/sites/default/files/mpip/MPIPRound1_Appendix.pdf

A faculty research paper exploring insider views of the criminal justice system is published here: http://ippsr.msu.edu/sites/default/files/MPIP/criminal_legal_system_mi.pdf

The report from MPIP Round 3 is here https://ippsr.msu.edu/sites/default/files/mpip/MPIPRound3_BriefReport.pdf

Blogs based on the third set of results are here:

http://ippsr.msu.edu/public-policy/michigan-wonk-blog/michigans-policy-insiders-take-softer-stance-immigration-us-public

http://ippsr.msu.edu/public-policy/michigan-wonk-blog/michigan-policy-insiders-believe-next-governor-will-be-democrat

Our fourth round of results will soon be publicly reported.

This project is especially valuable because it is designed to address the governing challenges of Michigan today while also building infrastructure for future research to respond to new political circumstances. Our survey is designed to allow us to ask questions about many policy issues while giving us the flexibility to ask about new issues as they arise. We will assess how Michigan political elites become involved in politics and obtain their positions; their connections with each other across parties, institutions, and issue areas; and their views of the performance of Michigan political institutions and leaders. We will research support for potential reforms and perceptions of voters, as well as views of how Michigan compares to other states in policy, institutions, and performance.

This panel survey, now entering its second year, is administered by the Office for Survey Research, which has longstanding and wide-ranging expertise in online surveys. We initially contacted about 2,500 people. Our goal was to construct a panel of 700 citizens, with substantial portions of the sample from legislative and administrative policymaking positions. All panel members will be invited to participate in online surveys at least four times or more per year. Panel members' names will never be linked to individual answers, and all results will only be reported in the aggregate.

If you have been invited to participate in the panel, please consider responding to our invitation. We would love to have your participation. If you would like to submit questions for the panel survey or have questions about the study or how the results will be used, please contact IPPSR Director Matt Grossmann at matt at mattg.org. We expect to make results publicly available through releases to news outlets. If you would like to be added to our media list, please contact Cynthia Kyle at cynthia.kyle at ssc.msu.edu. If you are experiencing technical difficulties with the website or misplaced your access information, please contact, Karen Clark, Project Manager, at clarkk at msu.edu.